The Grape Tray

December 5th 2017 Newsletter

Wine Spectator 90
LAURENT-PERRIER Brut Champagne NV, Magnum

A harmonious Champagne, with a vibrant backbone of acidity and a well-knit mix of poached pear, lemon preserves, smoke and toast. Very accessible. Drink now through 2018. 22,000 cases imported. –AN $100/magnum. Our Price $74.99/magnum

Wine Spectator 93
ANTHEM Cabernet Sauvignon St. Helena Beckstoffer Las Piedras Vineyard

2012 A classically styled Cabernet that's firm in structure and taut in focus and flavor, with a direct core of gravel and cedary oak—scented dark berry, licorice and savory herb flavors. Ends with drying, gripping tannins but also dense fruit and oak flavors. Drink now through 2028. 400 cases made. –JL $95 (Back in stock 12/6/17) Delicious!

2014 Shafer One Pt Five Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: This is a Cabernet with the Stags Leap District imprint all the way to its rich core. Lush, pronounced aromas lead to layers of flavor – black cherry, red cherry, savory herbs, cassis, black pepper, smoke, and briar fruit. The wine’s lively, energetic juiciness comes wrapped in ripe, chewy tannins offering the ideal structure for extensive aging. $97 Our Price $89.99

Wine Advocate 94
2014 Roberts + Rogers Cabernet Sauvignon Louer Family

The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Louer Family hails from St. Helena. Slightly more backward and dense, this is a more substantial 2014, with a dense ruby/purple color, loads of crème de cassis, black cherry, earth and spice. It is full-bodied, rich, concentrated and impressively endowed. It is accessible enough to drink now, but promises to be better in 3-4 years and evolve for up to 15 or more. $65 $54.99 (Arrives 12/6/17)

2016 Duckhorn Napa Sauvignon Blanc

Winemaker Notes: Alluring aromas of lychee, pineapple cake, and nectarine leap from the glass, along with zesty notes of grapefruit and lime. On the palate, this beautifully structured wine strikes a seamless balance between its rich, silky texture and the crisp acidity that adds poise and freshness to the abundant layers of bright citrus fruit. Blend: 84% Sauvignon Blanc, 16% Semillon. $30 Our Price $22.95

Wine Spectator 92
DUCKHORN Merlot Napa Valley 2014

Plush and rich-tasting, with finely interwoven flavors of dark cherry, plum tart and blackberry that are accented by cocoa powder notes. Asian spice accents fill the lush finish. Drink now through 2022. 52,000 cases made. –KM $54 Our Price $41.95

2014 Goldeneye Anderson Valley Pinot Noir

Winemaker Notes: Nestled amongst the coastal redwoods of the majestic Anderson Valley, Goldeneye's estate vineyards yield wines that exude the characteristics of their surroundings. Charming, but with a hint of wildness, plush yet rustic, this captivating Pinot Noir effortlessly balances layers of cherry, ripe cranberry and wild blackberry with notes of leather, earth and spice. Touched with a kiss of the finest French oak, it carries through to a velvety finish that is both long and lush. $56 Our Price $42.79

James Suckling 93
Laird Chardonnay Napa Valley Red Hen 2015

Amazing aromas of lemon zest and sliced apple aromas with hints of pear. Full body, lots of fruit and an intense finish. This shows a tension and depth that illustrates Napa character in chardonnay. Drink or hold. $30 (Arrives this afternoon)

Wine Spectator 95
ARAUJO Syrah Napa Valley Eisele Vineyard 2010

The flavors are explosive in this dense, firm and pure version, with expansive roasted game meat, herb, espresso, hot brick, black tea and mocha notes. Ends with dense, chewy tannins that cling. Should be a long-lived wine, best served by a few years of cellaring. Best from 2015 through 2030. 390 cases made. $200

2015 Obsidian Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: The nose is intriguing: brambly and dark with hints of cocoa powder. Rich and generous in the mouth, this wine features notes of black cherries mixed with blackberries and is soft yet voluminous. $28 Our Price $25.69 (Arrives 12/6/17)

2015 Wente Riva Ranch Chardonnay

Winemaker Notes: Our Riva Ranch Single Vineyard Chardonnay is a beautifully rich, yet balanced California-style Chardonnay that represents what the Arroyo Seco appellation has to offer. In addition to classic Chardonnay flavors of apple and pear, Arroyo Seco fruit consistently provides aromas and flavors of tropical and stone fruits. 90% barrel fermented, this is a distinctly robust and full-bodied Chardonnay perfectly balanced with ample acidity and ripe fruit character. $22 Our Price $12.95

2014 Mondavi Maestro Red

Winemaker Notes: Highly inspired by the response to our limited-release 50th Anniversary Maestro, we once again let artistic direction in the vineyard lead us to a unique blend in this second rendition of Maestro, where a crescendo of dark, juicy plum and cassis fruit, violet, cinnamon, and unsweetened cocoa linger on sumptuous sips full of vibrant flavor and plush tannins. Blend: 73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Cabernet Franc, 2% Merlot, 2% Petit Verdot. $50 Our Price $38.99

Antonio Galloni, Vinous 93
2013 Keenan Napa Cabernet

The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon is deep and powerful from the get go, with beams of supporting tannin and acidity that give the wine its sense of proportion. There is plenty of nuance in the dark fruit, along with terrific aromatic complexity, but today the tannins are imposing, to say the least. Readers should be prepared to cellar the 2013 for at least a few years, but even that may not be enough. This is another terrific example of the vintage. $56 Our Price $47.99

Wine Advocate 94
2013 Laird Family Estate Cabernet Sauvignon Flat Rock

The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Flat Rock Ranch, from another Yountville site, is softer than the Mast Ranch, with sweet tannin, dense purple color, plenty of crème de cassis, blackberry and blueberry. There is a nice floral element as well, and the wine finishes full, rich and impressive. Give it 3-4 years of cellaring and drink it over the following two decades. $80 (Back in stock 12/6/17)

Wine Spectator 95 and #4 Top 100
CASANOVA DI NERI Brunello di Montalcino 2012

Effusive aromas and flavors of raspberry, cherry, floral, mineral and tobacco are at the center of this linear, vibrant red. Well-structured, this offers terrific length on the sinewy finish. Best from 2020 through 2035. 6,054 cases made. –BS $65 Our Price $57.99 (Limited)

Wine Spectator 97
DOMAINE ST.-PRÉFERT Châteauneuf-du-Pape Auguste Favier Réserve 2015

Vibrant and captivating, with exuberant fruitcake, cinnamon and black tea aromas leading the way for a fleshy core of raspberry pâte de fruit, plum sauce and cassis, all allied to a lovely velvety texture. Maintains intensity through the finish, showing a long echo of pastis. Best from 2020 through 2040. 1,300 cases made. –JM Published Retail $55. Actual Retail $72 (Limited)

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